Our History

It all began in 1913 at the famous New York summer resort called Coney Island. Known as "the playground of the world", Coney Island was a summertime oasis where Americans, rich and poor alike gathered for sun, surf and good times. There, New Yorkers first sampled the nation's favorite new taste sensation - hot sausages in Vienna-type rolls with mustard and sauerkraut frankfurters. That summer, at Feltman's German Beer Garden - the very first frankfurter restaurant - two young polish immigrants named Nathan Handwerker and Ida Greenwald first met. Ida was a waitress and Nathan was a roll slicer. Well, one night Ida caught Nathan's eye and it turned out to be a match made in, well, hot dog heaven.

They soon married and in 1916, on the advice of two singing waiters named Jimmy Durante and Eddie Cantor, they plunked down their entire $300 life savings on their very own frankfurter stand. Ida provided Nathan her grandmother's secret spice recipe and Nathan added good old fashioned American value, selling the country's newest favorite food for just a nickel - half the price of​​ the competition. And it didn't stop there. With the same care they put into their hot dogs, Nathan and Ida cooked up tasty golden crinkle cut french fries they made from potatoes peeled fresh every morning and cooked in corn oil.​

​As time passed and America grew up, the frankfurter sandwich came to be known as the hot dog and Nathan's beef hot dogs became known as the best. Since then, Nathan's Famous has become a delicious and integral part of Americana​​. Nathan's Famous hot dogs have been served to nine American Presidents. In fact in 1939 when Franklin Delano Roosevelt entertained King George and Queen Elizabeth of Great Britain, he served Nathan's hot dogs to give them a true taste of America. ​Now there are new stores, new items on the menu and new generations of Nathan's Famous hot dog lovers. But some things have never changed. Like Nathan's Famous 1916 recipe and Nathan's dedication to freshness and quality.

​Thanks to Nathan and Ida, hot dog lovers the world over can live - and eat - happily ever after.​
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